Schneider begins supplying Telemecanique PLCs through its 1,500 SquareD distributors

Palatine, IL—To handle growing demand for automation products outside traditional industrial applications, Schneider Electric is supplying its Telemecanique programmable logic controllers (PLCs) and related products through its 1,500 Square D distributors.


Palatine, IL— To handle growing demand for automation products outside traditional industrial applications, Schneider Electric is supplying its Telemecanique programmable logic controllers (PLCs) and related products through its entire Square D distribution channel, which it says is the largest network in the electrical industry. Schneider adds this move reflects Telemecanique PLC hardware and software’s evolution as simple-to-apply technology for many commercial and process applications.

With more than 1,500 distributor locations in the U.S., Schneider and its authorized Square D distributors form a nationwide network that assures easy access to products and technical support. The U.S. channel includes distributor locations in the continental U.S., Alaska, and Hawaii, as well as Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Schneider adds it’s been estimated that a Square D distributor branch is located within a 30-minute drive of any customer.

“While we’ll continue to support the more than 200 distributors, who are focused on serving the specialized needs of industrial and OEM customers, extension of the authority to sell Telemecanique automation products to our entire channel reflects growing customer demand for the benefits of advanced Telemecanique automation technology in thousands of other applications, such as building automation, telecommunications, pipelines, transportation, warehousing and power distribution stations,” said Bill Snyder, Schneider’s channel development VP. “Even applications that touch the everyday lives of the average consumer, such as car washes, bowling alleys, garage door openers, lawn irrigation systems and appliances, are using PLCs to improve product reliability and performance and reduce energy consumption. Automation is now everywhere and our distribution channel is uniquely positioned to help all customers readily access advanced Telemecanique technology.”

The firm adds the decision to expand authority to sell Telemecanique automation products to the Square D distribution channel, which took effect July 1, is expected to increase new business opportunities for the company’s distributors. For example, its Premier distributors will gain the benefit of having Telemecanique automation products added to the Premier program, and receive all the support and financial benefits associated with the program.

The PLC, first developed in the 1960s to help the automotive industry improve the efficiency of production equipment, is now found in nearly every industrial machine and process. In the past decade, however, the PLC has moved beyond the factory floor as hundreds of businesses have sought to automate their equipment. This mainstreaming of the PLC has been accompanied by product development efforts by suppliers like Schneider Electric to build in intelligence through microprocessors and to simplify software to make the technology easier to operate and maintain.

“For the past decade, our Telemecanique product development efforts have been focused on making the PLC, not only smaller, smarter and faster, but also easier and less expensive to connect to Ethernet and the Web, which every business relies on today to manage its processes and communicate with its suppliers and customers,” adds Snyder.

Schneider reports that it introduced the world’s first PLC with an embedded Web server in 1997, and has sold more Ethernet-ready automation and electrical devices than any other electrical products manufacturer in the world. “This capability also makes it easier to connect our PLCs to other manufacturers’ products, which is particularly appealing to non-industrial customers who typically insist on an open architecture for their systems,” says Snyder.

Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Jim Montague, news editor

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